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In This Issue
It's membership month!  Grab a friend, or several, and attend one of our membership drives below.

IIDA Membership Promotions:
  • Any current member who pays for 2016 in full by the end of Oct. will be entered into a drawing for a $500 gift card
  • Enjoy 2015 for free; same promotion as always. If a new member pays for 2016 they get the last 4 months of 2015 for free and their application fee is waived 
  • Member get a Member; same promotion as last year. New member gets a discounted membership rate and referring member is entered into a drawing to win one of two $250 gift cards. 
  • Chapter prize for highest percentage of new members who join now through 3/31. Winning chapter will get $1,000 towards CLC expenses.

My IIDA Story
Name: Monica Browning
Employer: JDavis 

I first learned about IIDA when I was a student at UNCG just a couple years ago and didn't really know what it was all about.  Several professors and older students had spoken to us about the benefits of joining a professional organization during the membership drive, and I decided to become a member.  

After attending a few student events as well as IIDA Triad events, I began to realize how involved design professionals were in the organization and how valuable it would be for me to network with so many well-connected people in the design community. These were people who would later become my mentors, employers, and friends. 

One of the first events I was able to be a part of after joining IIDA was the IIDA student design competition at NeoCon in Chicago.  A classmate and I got a chance to go to one of the biggest design trade shows and compete with other design students across the country to design a space in the Merchandise Mart, as well as getting to go to all of the vendor booths and see the latest design trends from around the world. After getting a glimpse of what IIDA was like, I knew it was for me. 

I became president of the IIDA student chapter at UNCG. This allowed me to gain experience in a leadership role and be even more involved in what was happening in the design world. In this role, I met so many people and had so many great experiences that I cannot begin to describe all of them here. It was during that year that I decided to apply for the IIDA scholastic award and was selected as a finalist along with one of my classmates at UNCG. As a result, we were invited to Designworks where design firms from the Carolinas would be accepting awards for their work. 
A s a college senior who was about to graduate and was on the job hunt, this was a very exciting opportunity. Because of my previous involvement in IIDA, I saw several familiar faces at the event, such as Susan Weiler, who I had gotten to know as our IIDA student liaison at UNCG. There she introduced me to several people from the area, some of who were looking for design grads to work at their companies. One of these people was Katie Henderson, who was a designer at JDavis at the time, who was accepting an award for a multi-family design project.  After Katie and I connected at the event, I sent my resume, got an interview, and was hired for my current job as a designer at JDavis upon graduation.  

This story goes to show how much IIDA professionals value students and new members, and will go out of their way to help to build you up to reach whatever goals you set for yourself. I have met so many people through IIDA that would help me make any connection I need to in order to get where I would like to go professionally. In this case, I was able to land a job at a firm doing exactly what I wanted to do right after graduation. I had no idea joining IIDA would be so much more than another extra-curricular activity and something to put on my resume. I have met so many people that have become my friends, much like Susan and Katie, who I have kept closely in touch with to this day. IIDA has really made the difference in getting me where I want to be at the start of my career and I know that the journey is just beginning!

Use this hashtag to share photos of IIDA Carolinas Chapter events in September.
Letter from your VP of Membership


The other day I was having a great chat with some design professionals about IIDA. One of them, a non-member, lobbed a question over the bough that really made me think. Now I know how the beauty contestants feel when they are asked provocative questions. Since the answer to his question wasn't "World Peace", I really had to think about my response. His question was, "Why should I join IIDA?"  My first response to a difficult question is always, "I'm so glad you asked that question!" This is a stall tactic that gives me time to think. Actually, thinking back, I really AM glad that he asked me this, because it really caused me to stop and think about it and put into words what I think, believe and feel about belonging to IIDA. There are both implicit and explicit reasons to belong to IIDA. Falling into the explicit category are things like using the IIDA appellation after your name, learning opportunities, publications, professional discounts, a career center, events, design competitions, and many more. These are all things that you can see and touch. All of them are very important and add value to our lives and our careers.  Using the IIDA appellation, for example, is an outward statement to the world that you are a bona fide professional, having met all of the requirements to use the appellation that sets yourself apart from those who haven't.  That's a pretty big deal! Design Competitions give you a forum to promote yourself and your firm to local celebrity status and perhaps beyond by entering and winning local and international competitions. That's a pretty big deal, too. Each one of these benefits of membership adds credibility to you personally and to your chosen career in general. Those, in and of themselves, in my opinion are worth the cost of the annual dues.

But- what about the implicit benefits? Those are the things that are more implied or inherent and often times are felt and sensed, not touched and seen. One example of an implicit benefit is the discovery of leadership abilities. Belonging to IIDA and then getting involved in it at the local or national level can allow you to discover leadership abilities that maybe you never realized you had, or, perhaps you realized them but you have never had a vehicle to use them before. Perhaps you are a visionary and you are able to see things the way they "could be" instead of the way they "are". Belonging to IIDA can provide many opportunities for you to grow these skills and uncover new ones. All you have to do is raise your hand! Another implicit benefit is that through IIDA membership, you have a voice for the profession that you chose and love. You have a venue or a vehicle for furthering our cause through Advocacy. Do you support licensing for interior designers? You have a way to get your voice heard through IIDA. Do you see a need for change? You have a voice through IIDA. Together, as a unified organization of professionals with like minds, we have a stronger voice for advocacy and change than the single efforts of individuals. Do you care about the future of your chosen profession? If you care- you will want to be a part of it- not a bystander. You will want to have a way to, along with others, chart the course for the future of interior design. The old adage "You get out of it what you put into it." is so true with regard to being a member of IIDA.  If you join, you get all the explicit membership benefits...but if you get involved and give of your valuable time and get so much more. If you are not a member, join today. If you are a member and you want to get involved, raise your hand. You won't regret it. 

This is a link to an IIDA Publication entitled, " The Value Manifesto"  It explores in greater detail the benefits of being an IIDA member. Take a moment to check it out! If you want membership info...please contact me.

Anita Holland, IIDA
VP of Membership
Carolinas Chapter
Charter Member

Upstate City Center 
Membership Drive | Upstate Turbo Drive

Charlotte City Center 
Membership Drive | Membership, Margaritas, & Mingling

Columbia City Center 
Membership Drive | Trivia Night

WNC City Center 
Membership Drive | Have an IPA with IIDA

Triad City Center 
Membership Drive| Wine & Design

Coastal City Center 
Membership Drive | Carolina Ale House

Triangle City Center 
CEU | A Comparative Look at Vinyl & Polyurethane Coated Fabrics

Members on the Move

If you have an announcement (birth, wedding, new job, passed the NCIDQ, graduated, etc.) send this information to  Please include your City Center and name with this information.

Our Chapter is Seeking CEU Presentations

Are you an IIDA Carolinas Industry Partner or Industry Member with a fantastic CEU that you'd like to present? If so, we are looking for you! Please contact Emma Maltba with presentation credentials for consideration for one of our future city center events across the Carolinas.

Thank you to our 2015 Partners

You make our events possible 

Quick Links
  We look forward to seeing you at the next event.
Communications Team
Amanda Wade, IIDA, LEED AP ID+C
Debbie Nestvogel, Associate IIDA, LEED AP BD+C